Johannesburg -

The Maphumulo taxi association in KwaZulu-Natal does not have authority to operate on the Darnall to Stanger route, Transport MEC Willies Mchunu said on Thursday.

Speaking at a meeting with KwaDukuza municipality councillors, Mchunu said the department had reached the final decision on the matter and he hoped this would result in an end to the taxi violence in the area.

“After looking at all documentation and following thorough process, we have concluded that Maphumulo and its members have to stop operating the contested route of Darnall,” Mchunu said in a statement.

“This decision was reached after thorough consultations with all affected parties including the legal representatives of members of Maphumulo that illegally operated the contested route.”

His department had further plans to restore normality in taxi operations in the area.

Mchunu met the Maphumulo and KwaDukuza taxi associations where he also informed them of his final decision over the contested route.

The Maphumulo association was not pleased with the decision, Mchunu said.

He advised them to approach the court to pursue the matter in a legal manner.

Stanger Taxi Association on the other hand were “jubilant” after hearing the decision announced by Mchunu.

There had been several shooting incidents at the KwaDukuza taxi rank, allegedly involving security companies contracted to the two associations.

In one incident, a passenger was injured.

“I have engaged the police to provide maximum security to ensure public safety, mainly at the taxi rank and in Darnall.”

Mchunu planned to meet the community of Darnall next week to inform them of his decision. - Sapa